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What FIFA World Cup 2018 means for the future of international football

Football's showpiece event, the World Cup, kicks off on June 14

FIFA World Cup 2018: Imaging: Ajay Mohanty

  FIFAWorldCup2018:Imaging:AjayMohanty Andthereitwas.Onanexhilarating,slightlyanticlimacticnight,SergioRamosenactedbeforeusthemostdisquietingsceneofanypre-WorldCupscript.Wesurelywouldn’tbeinaWorldCupyearifsomecalamitousturnofmisfortunehadsomehowfailedtoputamarqueeplayer’sparticipationinjeopardy.Neymar’sfootinjurywastooearlyinthepiecetohaveusgenuinelyworkedup—theBrazilianwasalwaysexpectedtobereadyjustintimeforRussia.Matchsharpnesswasaconcernbutsuchfearswere ...